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M2-F3
Part of M2-F2 Family

M2F2  Lifting Body

M2F2 Lifting Body
M2F2 Lifting Body with F-104 Chase Plane
Credit: NASA

American manned spaceplane. 43 launches, 1966.07.12 to 1971.12.21 . The crashed M2-F2 was rebuilt as the M2-F3 with enlarged vertical stabilizers. Maximum speed achieved was Mach 1.6, top altitude 21,800 m.

Status: Operational 1966. Thrust: 26.40 kN (5,935 lbf). Gross mass: 3,600 kg (7,900 lb). Unfuelled mass: 2,300 kg (5,000 lb). Height: 6.77 m (22.21 ft). Span: 2.93 m (9.61 ft).

The final X-30 National Aerospace Plane configuration seemed to owe much to the M2.

Spacecraft delta v: 1,000 m/s (3,200 ft/sec).



Family: Spaceplane, Suborbital, US Rocketplanes. Country: USA. Engines: XLR11. Propellants: Lox/Alcohol. Agency: Northrop. Bibliography: 152, 158, 22, 4348, 48, 49, 97, 6665.
Photo Gallery

M2-F3M2-F3
Credit: © Mark Wade


Lifting BodiesLifting Bodies
Manned Lifting Bodies
Credit: NASA


M2F1 Lifting BodyM2F1 Lifting Body
The M2-F1 was the first lifting body configuration tested. This glider was made from plywood. It was later succeeded by the M2-F2 metal version.
Credit: NASA


M2F3 Lifting BodyM2F3 Lifting Body
M2F3 Lifting Body Launch from B-52
Credit: NASA



1970 June 2 - .
  • M2 Flight 17 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 1. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. First M2-F3 flight. Maximum Speed - 755 kph. Maximum Altitude - 13716 m. Flight Time - 218 sec..

1970 July 21 - .
  • M2 Flight 18 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 2. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 708 kph. Maximum Altitude - 13716 m. Flight Time - 228 sec..

1970 November 2 - .
  • M2 Flight 19 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 3. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 690 kph. Maximum Altitude - 13716 m. Flight Time - 236 sec..

1970 November 25 - .
  • M2 Flight 20 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 4. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. First powered flight. Maximum Speed - 859 kph. Maximum Altitude - 15819 m. Flight Time - 377 sec..

1971 February 9 - .
  • M2 Flight 21 - . Crew: Gentry. Payload: M2-F3 flight 5. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Gentry. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 755 kph. Maximum Altitude - 13716 m. Flight Time - 241 sec..

1971 February 26 - .
  • M2 Flight 22 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 6. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 821 kph. Maximum Altitude - 13716 m. Flight Time - 348 sec..

1971 July 23 - .
  • M2 Flight 23 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 7. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 788 kph. Maximum Altitude - 18440 m. Flight Time - 353 sec..

1971 August 9 - .
  • M2 Flight 24 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 8. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1035 kph. Maximum Altitude - 18898 m. Flight Time - 415 sec..

1971 August 25 - .
  • M2 Flight 25 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 9. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. First M2-F3 supersonic flight. Maximum Speed - 1163 kph. Maximum Altitude - 20513 m. Flight Time - 390 sec..

1971 September 24 - .
  • M2 Flight 26 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 10. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 772 kph. Maximum Altitude - 12802 m. Flight Time - 210 sec..

1971 November 15 - .
  • M2 Flight 27 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 11. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Glide flight. Maximum Speed - 784 kph. Maximum Altitude - 13716 m. Flight Time - 215 sec..

1971 December 1 - .
  • M2 Flight 28 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 12. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1356 kph. Maximum Altitude - 21580 m. Flight Time - 391 sec..

1971 December 16 - .
  • M2 Flight 29 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 13. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 861 kph. Maximum Altitude - 14265 m. Flight Time - 451 sec..

1972 July 25 - .
  • M2 Flight 30 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 14. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1049 kph. Maximum Altitude - 18562 m. Flight Time - 420 sec..

1972 August 11 - .
  • M2 Flight 31 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 15. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1168 kph. Maximum Altitude - 20480 m. Flight Time - 375 sec..

1972 August 24 - .
  • M2 Flight 32 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 16. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1344 kph. Maximum Altitude - 20330 m. Flight Time - 376 sec..

1972 September 12 - .
  • M2 Flight 33 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 17. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 935 kph. Maximum Altitude - 14020 m. Flight Time - 387 sec..

1972 September 27 - .
  • M2 Flight 34 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 18. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1424 kph. Maximum Altitude - 20330 m. Flight Time - 366.5 sec..

1972 October 5 - .
  • M2 Flight 35 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 19. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1455 kph. Maximum Altitude - 20210 m. Flight Time - 376 sec..

1972 October 19 - .
  • M2 Flight 36 - . Crew: Manke. Payload: M2-F3 flight 20. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Manke. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 961 kph. Maximum Altitude - 14360 m. Flight Time - 359 sec..

1972 November 1 - .
  • M2 Flight 37 - . Crew: Manke. Payload: M2-F3 flight 21. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Manke. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1292 kph. Maximum Altitude - 21730 m. Flight Time - 378 sec..

1972 November 9 - .
  • M2 Flight 38 - . Crew: Powell. Payload: M2-F3 flight 22. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Powell. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 961 kph. Maximum Altitude - 14260 m. Flight Time - 364 sec..

1972 November 21 - .
  • M2 Flight 39 - . Crew: Manke. Payload: M2-F3 flight 23. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Manke. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1524 kph. Maximum Altitude - 20330 m. Flight Time - 377 sec..

1972 November 29 - .
  • M2 Flight 40 - . Crew: Powell. Payload: M2-F3 flight 24. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Powell. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1432 kph. Maximum Altitude - 20570 m. Flight Time - 357 sec..

1972 December 6 - .
  • M2 Flight 41 - . Crew: Powell. Payload: M2-F3 flight 25. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Powell. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Maximum Speed - 1265 kph. Maximum Altitude - 20820 m. Flight Time - 332 sec..

1972 December 13 - .
  • M2 Flight 42 - . Crew: Dana. Payload: M2-F3 flight 26. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Dana. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Fastest M2-F3 flight. Maximum Speed - 1712 kph. Maximum Altitude - 20330 m. Flight Time - 383 sec..

1972 December 21 - .
  • M2 Flight 43 - . Crew: Manke. Payload: M2-F3 flight 27. Nation: USA. Related Persons: Manke. Program: NASA Lifting Body. Class: Manned. Type: Manned spaceplane. Spacecraft Bus: M2-F2. Spacecraft: M2-F3. Last M2-F3 flight, also highest. Maximum Speed - 1377 kph. Maximum Altitude - 21790 m. Flight Time - 390 sec..


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